Comprehensive guide to the Dutch residence permit for Au Pairs, the application process, required documents, and FAQs
A Netherlands Au Pair visa is a Dutch residence permit that allows the holder to remain in the country for up to one year. During that time, they stay with a host family who will provide them with lodge and board. In exchange, the applicant has to do light household chores for the family.
If you are not from the EU/EEA or Switzerland, you are likely required to apply for a residence permit to stay in the Netherlands as an au pair.
How Can I Apply for a Netherlands Au Pair Visa?
You cannot apply for an Au Pair visa to the Netherlands on you own. An au pair agency will have to apply to the IND for you. They do this while you are still in your country of residence. After the IND has issued the residence permit to you, then you can come into the Netherlands.
Before applying, your au pair agency has to obtain all the necessary documents from you. They will inform you on what types of documents you will need.
However, if you need a provisional residence permit (MVV) in addition to the residence permit, then the procedure changes slightly. If an MVV is necessary, the agency has to apply for both the MVV and the residence permit. If you are granted the MVV, your agency will inform you and you will have three months to collect it from your country’s Dutch embassy.
Then, depending on when your MVV is issued for, you have 90 days to travel to the Netherlands and collect your residence permit. Your agency will inform you of the date and place you can collect it.
Your agency will also have to pay a non-refundable fee in order for the IND to process your application. The visa fees are reviewed twice-yearly and can be changed. See the current Netherlands visa fees here.
Where do I find an Au Pair Visa agency?
You can find all authorized Au Pair agencies on the official website of the IND (Immigration and Naturalisation Service). They have a list of the au pair agencies that are recognized as sponsors by the IND.
Only recognized sponsors can apply for an au pair visa for you and the IND only chooses trustworthy agencies.
Your agency is responsible for making sure you are staying in the Netherlands on a legal basis. They must also inform the IND of any changes in the circumstances of your stay. This includes changes made in the details of a work schedule between you and the host family, if you change host families altogether, or if you leave the Netherlands.
What Are the Requirements for a Netherlands Au Pair Visa?
In addition to the standard documents required for a Dutch visa, a Dutch au pair visa may come with additional conditions and requirements.
Some of them include:
- You must be aged 18-30.
- You have to stay in a host family of at least two people.
- The host family has sufficient income for a minimum of one year.
- You cannot have worked for your host family previously.
- You can do light household chores for a maximum of 8 hours a day; you can work for up to 30 hours a week.
- You have at least two days off per week.
- Your host family provides you with food, accomodation, and pocket money.
- You and your host family have to detail a daily work schedule. This has to include: how many hours the au pair has to work; which of the days they have off; who will be doing the household chores alongside the au pair.
- Your host family cannot have family relations to you up to the third degree.
- You cannot pay more than €34 to prepare for your stay in the Netherlands, including registration, fees, intermediary costs or taking a course.
- You cannot pay any deposit to an au pair agency or intermediary agency (Dutch or foreign).
- You cannot sign a contract with your host family, au pair agency, or an intermediary agency which obligates you to pay money if you do not comply with the contract.
- You cannot help take care of people who have special needs and require special skills.
Can I change My Host Family While on a Dutch Au Pair Visa?
If for some reason your host family is not suited to you, you can change it and still keep your Netherlands au pair visa.
You change your au pair agency too, in which case, the new agency becomes your sponsor. The new au pair agency also has to be recognized by the IND.
For both changes, you or your sponsor will have to notify the IND.
Can I Work in the Netherlands with an Au Pair Visa?
No, a Dutch au pair visa does not permit the holder to carry out work other than the light household chores for the host family.